While the Malayalam industry is reeling under the shock of Dileep’s arrest, the Tollywood industry too has found itself in a major controversy. As per reports, the Telangana Excise (Enforcement) Department has sent a sent legal notices to top Tollywood artists that include actors, actresses and singers regarding a major drug racket case. What has shocked Tollywood is the mention of top stars like Puri Jagannadh and Ravi Teja, Charmee Kaur, cinematographer Shyam K Naidu, art director Chinna N Dharmarao, P Subbaraju, P Navdeep, Tarun Kumar, A Tanish, as per reports In Indian Express. Ravi Teja’s mention has specially shocked the industry considering it was his brother who was allegedly into drugs.
Teja’s brother Bharath Raj died in a car crash on June 26 and was allegedly a drug user but Teja’s image had always been clean. Teja, Jagannath and Charmee have denied anything to do with drugs and the racket in separate statements on Friday. The 11 have been told to appear before the SIT at its office between July 19 and 27.
Sources from within the department told India Today that other than the fact that the mobile numbers of these celebrities were found in the contact list of the alleged kingpin of drug racket, Calvin, nothing else ties them to the case. The Excise department has summoned them just to clear all doubts. The Movie Artistes’ Association (MAA) recently held a press conference where producer Allu Aravind said that the Telugu film industry was clean except for a “few individuals” who were tarnishing its image. The ‘MAA’ has now issued a warning to all these stars to put an end to this practice as apart from ruining their health, it’s also tarnishing the reputation of the industry.
As per further reports, the special investigation team of the excise department has summoned 12 artists to give their statements. “We have given notices to a few persons who we think are involved in drug and substance abuse. We want to record their statements so we have called them to appear before the SIT,” stated the director of Telangana Excise. They can appear before the SIT between 19th July – 27th July. This is based on the revelations of 12 people who had been arrested with regards to this drug case. As per reports, officials believe the gang is selling hi-profile drugs like Lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD) and Methylenedioxymethamphetamine (MDMA).